Ms. Garrett provides counseling, coaching and legal assistance in connection with Chapter 7 bankruptcies and counseling and coaching in connection with Chapter 13 bankruptcies. A vital part of Ms. Garrett’s work is to assist her clients with understanding the pros and cons (yes, cons) of bankruptcy, as well as helping her clients determine whether other non-bankruptcy options are available to her clients. Ms. Garrett counsels her clients on the importance of considering other options before proceeding with bankruptcy. For some individuals, a “fresh start” can come at too high a price. Before willing to assist her clients with filing a bankruptcy Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition, she first works closely with her clients to determine whether other options are available and/or whether timing issues are a factor. For instance, a consumer at risk of losing their home who is in the middle of procuring a non-bankruptcy loan modification (e.g., in the middle of trial payments) may need to wait until the trial modification is completed—else filing the bankruptcy petition could put an abrupt halt on months and months of hard work in working with the lender to procure a permanent loan modification. In such cases, the timing of filing bankruptcy is a major factor.
At this time, Ms. Garrett does not prepare Chapter 13 Bankruptcy petition for her clients.Types of Consultations15-Minute Consultations
Ms. Garrett provides two types of 15-minute consultations—a free versionn and a paid version:
Free Version: In the free version, Ms. Garrett will provide you with the general principals of law regarding your particular legal issue; however, she cannot give you any legal advice or gather any particular information or facts about your situation or legal matter. For about 50% of the public, this is sufficient for their needs.
Paid Version: In the paid version, Ms. Garrett will gather specific information related to your particular legal issue and give you a general assessment of your case based on your particular set of facts. This option is preferred for people who want an initial assessment of their case and/or have a “quick question” to ask Ms. Garrett about their particular set of fact. This option is preferred when learning just the general principals of law is not enough. Also, if you believe 15 minutes is not enough, then Ms. Garret provides 30 minute consultations for a $50 fee. Also, if you later hire Ms. Garrett to represent you, she will give you a full credit of the $25 (or $50) fee towards future legal services. This discounted fee is offered on a one-time basis and is only applicable to prospective clients. Current or former clients are not eligible.Two-Hour Financial Consultation:
Price: $600 (20% discount from regular hourly rate)
What you pay for: 2 hours of legal and financial review of debtor’s financial history.
This package includes: reviewing, analyzing, diagnosing and prescribing a plan of action after analyzing client’s financial history. Ms. Garrett asks questions regarding consumer’s personal background, questions related to consumer’s mortgage (to include determining number of loans, types of loans, purpose of loans, status of loans, status of taxes), questions related to identifying all sources of income, questions related to identifying all assets, questions related to identifying all sources of income and questions related to identifying and categorizing all household expenses. Additional questions relate to identifying cross-over issues such as divorce and support issues, identifying issues relating to retirement and estate planning.
Cross-over issues: Cross-over issues include divorce, loan modification, deficiency judgments, taxation issues (loan forgiveness, capital gains taxes), estate planning, probate, retirement planning.
Goals: The goal of this type of coaching is to assist the consumer in strategizing and/or prioritizing the consumer’s options as they relate to one or more of the issues, to include cross-over issues, for example, the “underwater” house, creditor lawsuits, bankruptcy and non-bankruptcy options.
This package does NOT include: document preparation, debt settlement, communications with third parties, court appearances or non-court appearances or anything else not listed above in the 2-hour Consultation.Post-Conference Conferences/Coaching
This is a pay-as-you-go service. The client is charged on an hourly basis, based upon Ms. Garrett’s regular hourly rate of $375/hour. Minimum time: one (1) hour. No discount.
Types of Scenarios in which Post-Conferences are helpful:
- Debtor has follow up questions related to issues identified during consultation and wish to delve further, e.g. cross-over divorce or loan modification issue.
- Questions relating to other areas of law—as they relate to financial issues.
- Questions relating to non-bankruptcy options, such as debt settlement, challenging creditor’s lawsuit, preparing a Claim of Exemption form.